Bible Ballistics: BBs #481 Send Me!!! But Not There???
We talked last time about the call of God to His own to go and serve in His fields, and the difficulty of the task; today I’d like us to consider our own frequent and self-willed unwillingness to go where God wants us to go. Sometimes when God calls (In fact almost always!) it is at, in our opinion, an inopportune moment! But I just want to remind each of us of the inopportune moments that our Lord faced:
Laying aside His glory to take on flesh—
Living in a body of flesh and blood for you and me—
Coming to those whom He created to face rejection—
Coming to a humanity that He loved to be denied—
Taking on the “servant hood” to save us from hell—
Facing the trials, beatings and crucifixion on Calvary—
To save us from our sin, death and hell—
But “Praise God from whom all blessings flow!” He didn’t stay in that grave but He rose victorious so that we could “have life, and…..have it more abundantly”—by the power of His resurrection and the indwelling Holy Spirit imparted to His own—those who receive His gift of salvation and new birth!
“He was in the world,
and the world was made by him,
and the world knew him not.
11 He came unto his own,
and his own received him not.
12 But as many as received him,
to them gave he power
to become the sons of God,
even to them that believe
on his name:
13 Which were born,
not of blood,
nor of the will of the flesh,
nor of the will of man,
but of God.” John 1:10-13
We are redeemed, delivered and saved from sin by the power of His sacrifice, what could He ask of us that is ‘too much to ask’?
“Giving thanks unto the Father,
which hath made us meet to be partakers
of the inheritance of the saints in light:
13 Who hath delivered us
from the power of darkness,
and hath translated us
into the kingdom of his dear Son:
14 In whom we have redemption
through his blood,
even the forgiveness of sins:” Colossians 1:12-14
What a price He paid to bring us to God, “redemption through his blood”—what price are we willing to pay to show our gratitude and love for our Lord? When we hear the call of God what will we do? When we are called to suffer for Him, what is our attitude and response? Are we willing to follow the path of Jesus, to submit and obey the call of God? Or are we so consumed with ‘self’ that we whine and complain when God asks us to follow Him? Is it too hard a thing He is asking? Is it to time-consuming? Is it inconvenient and certainly costly to our ‘public image’?
“For what glory is it, if, when ye be buffeted
for your faults,
ye shall take it patiently?
but if, when ye do well,
and suffer for it,
ye take it patiently,
this is acceptable with God.
21 For even hereunto were ye called:
because Christ also suffered for us,
leaving us an example,
that ye should follow his steps:
22 Who did no sin,
neither was guile found in his mouth:
23 Who, when he was reviled,
reviled not again;
when he suffered,
he threatened not;
but committed himself
that judgeth righteously:
24 Who his own self bare our sins
in his own body
on the tree,
being dead to sins,
should live unto righteousness:
by whose stripes ye were healed.
25 For ye were as sheep
but are now returned
unto the Shepherd
of your souls.” 1 Peter 2:20-25
Or do we understand that to walk with Him is to join in His suffering for us—and to pursue the holiness and glory of God in this life, knowing that the “suffering of this present time….” are incomparable to the glory we will share with Him. Will we heed the message that Paul shares with us?
“The Spirit itself
with our spirit,
that we are the children of God:
17 And if children,
heirs of God,
if so be that we suffer with him,
that we may be also glorified together.
18 For I reckon that the sufferings
of this present time
are not worthy to be compared
with the glory
which shall be revealed in us.” Romans 8:16-18
NO COMPARISON!!! When we choose to obey, there is no sweeter or safer place to be than in the center of God’s will! I always think of Jim and Elizabeth Elliott and their choice to follow Jesus—knowing it could cost them more than the world thought it should. When questioned about his willingness to follow Jesus into a wilderness, Jim Elliott’s response is still profound today and it says it all:
“He is no fool
who gives what he cannot keep
to gain what he cannot lose.”
Amen and Amen! May we ever pursue HIM—are you willing?
“Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.” Matthew 16:24
“I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.” Galatians 2:20